Google will start paying some publishers for news content in Australia under a new licensing program

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  • Google has launched a new licensing program to pay publishers for news content.
  • The deal will launch with local and national publications in Australia, Brazil and Germany, with others to follow.
  • It comes after the ACCC called for a creation a code of conduct that would force companies like Facebook and Google to pay publishers for content.

Google has launched a new licensing program to pay publishers for news content.

The tech giant is starting with local and national publications in Australia, Brazil and Germany, with more places to follow.

Google VP of news product management Brad Bender announced the new licensing program in a blog post, saying the program will “pay publishers for high-quality content for a new news experience”.

“This program will help participating publishers monetise their content through an enhanced storytelling experience that lets people go deeper into more complex stories, stay informed and be exposed to a world of different issues and interests,” he said.

While the details on what exactly this will actually look like aren’t clear, the new system will launch on Google News and Discover “later this year”.

Google is also going to pay for free access to paywalled articles where available. The company is pitching it as a way for publishers who have paywalled content to give people a chance to see articles they wouldn’t otherwise get access to, and drive up audience numbers.

Local Aussie news titles such as InQueensland and South Australian based InDaily are part of the new initiative.

“With local news under stress, finding new channels and new audiences for our premium content, in safe and curated environments, is a high priority,” Paul Hamra, Managing Director of InQueensland and InDaily said in a statement. “This opportunity will give us access to new markets and provide additional commercial benefits.”

The move comes after efforts in Europe and Australia to get tech giants to pay publishers for content.

In April, the Australian government called on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) to create a mandatory code of conduct that would force companies like Facebook and Google to pay media companies for publishing their stories.

“It’s only fair that those that generate content get paid for it,” Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said earlier this year.

READ MORE:

Australia will force tech titans like Google and Facebook to pay news publishers for content. Similar efforts in Europe show it can be a tough battle.

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